France's Macron thinks 'the worst is yet to come' in Ukraine after talking with Putin, reports say

Putin, Macron
Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) meets French President Emmanuel Macron (R) on February 07, 2022 in Moscow, Russia.Kremlin Press Office/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
  • France's Macron thinks "the worst is yet to come" in Ukraine after talking with Putin on Thursday.

  • A senior French official said the 90-minute phone call did not yield any diplomatic progress.

  • The official said Putin was determined to carry out the ongoing war in Ukraine until "the end."

French President Emmanuel Macron thinks "the worst is yet to come" in Ukraine after talking with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday, according to multiple reports.

A senior French official said Macron's warning came after the two leaders spoke for 90 minutes, which did not yield any diplomatic progress, The Washington Post reported.

The official said Putin was determined to carry out the ongoing war in Ukraine until "the end," the paper reported.

Putin also told Macron that Russia's goals in Ukraine would be "fulfilled" and that the war was going "according to plan," Reuters reported, citing a statement issued by the Kremlin.

Related video: Russian forces ramp up attacks on Ukrainian cities

The statement read: "It was confirmed that, first of all, we are talking about the demilitarisation and neutral status of Ukraine, so that a threat to the Russian Federation will never emanate from its territory."

Russia on Wednesday captured its first major city, Kherson, after nearly a week of failure to break Ukrainian resistance.

Western officials have warned that Russia's lack of anticipated progress in Ukraine so far may lead to Putin's decision to stage a more aggressive approach.

Both Russia and Ukraine said the second round of negotiations between the two sides is slated to take place on Thursday.

In the last few days, Russian forces have ramped up their attacks on Ukraine's capital city, Kyiv, and the second-largest city, Kharkiv, as troops reportedly fire missiles at civilian areas.

As a result, the US State Department has accused Russia of "widespread" human rights abuses in Ukraine, while top advocacy groups warn that ongoing bombings and attacks against Ukrainian citizens could be considered war crimes.

The International Criminal Court on Wednesday announced that it is launching an investigation into potential war crimes in Ukraine.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

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